Romans 6:1-7 – “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also being the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin.” NASU
I had a fellow preacher say to me recently, “I’m dead to sin.” In the course of the conversation, he began to complain about how some situation was troubling him with the temptation to sin and how another situation was causing him grief and offense. I waited until the conversation had continued a bit more and said to him, “You said you are dead to sin, right?” He very piously shouted, “ABSOLUTELY!” I asked, “How many dead people have you seen tempted, offended, or grieved?” He looked stunned and I continued, “If you are truly Dead to Sin then temptation should have no impact on you nor should things offend.”
The problem is that this is a goal, prize or dream that we should shoot for and attain but much of the time, for most of us, it is just that, a dream or a hope. We are ‘pressing toward the mark’ but we have not arrived or my experience in my own life and with others is that we are aiming for it, striving for it, working toward it but too often we find that it is not a fulfilled reality in our lives at least on some level.
Maybe we need to rethink our understanding of salvation and begin to ask the Holy Spirit for discipline and determination to actually walk out in life what the Bible declares about us. Once we come to Christ and have our sins forgiven we enter into the newness of life. We are not, at that point, perfect but find that our spiritual life is a progression and growth experience. We mature, we develop, we encounter, we overcome, we fail, we succeed, and we become more like Christ as we move through this dimension called time.
We should not now or in the future be ‘slaves to sin’ because we have been set free from its bondage and chains through the Blood of Jesus. When we find that we are not quite as dead as we professed it is time to head to the prayer closet, shut the door, and cry out to God for His help. It is time to allow the Holy Spirit to identify those areas of our life that need to have radical spiritual surgery done on and those areas in which we are anything but dead so we can through death to sin rise to newness of life in Jesus.
May God be with you as you go through your day!